Skip to main content

Indiana Specialized Driving Privileges Excludes OWI – DUI Breath Test Refusals

A new Indiana traffic law became effective on January 1, 2015 which gives judges broad discretion to grant specialized driving privileges to persons who have a suspended driver’s license. Specialized driving privileges can be granted to persons who are suspended as the result of criminal convictions, such as operating while intoxicated or operating while suspended; habitual traffic offenders, who have been suspended for 5 years, 10 years, or for life; and to persons suspended for no insurance and other administrative violations. While the specialized driving privileges can be granted for most license suspensions, persons who have refused a breath test are not eligible.

Lafayette, Indiana DUI Attorneys: The Effect of Refusing a Breath Test in Indiana

If a person refuses to submit to a chemical test during an OWI – DUI investigation in Indiana, the person’s driver’s license will be suspended for one year; or two years if they have a prior conviction for operating while intoxicated. In addition, the person will face up to a 2 year license suspension if he or she is convicted and will not be eligible for specialized driving privileges. That means that there may be no legal way for a person to obtain a license to drive to work if he or she has refused a breath test.

Lafayette, Indiana DUI Lawyers: Breath Test Refusals Often Result in a Blood Draw

Persons who refuse a breath test are often surprised when the officer obtains a search warrant to draw his or her blood. This is a common practice in Indiana and does not alleviate the breath test refusal suspension. Thus, a person who refused an OWI breath test will receive a one year suspension, often be subjected to a blood draw to determine his or her alcohol concentration level, and be rendered ineligible for specialized driving privileges for work.

If You are Arrested for DUI, Should You Refuse a Breath Test in Indiana?

If you are arrested for DUI in Indiana, you should consider the following in determining whether to submit to a breath test:

While you can never be certain whether police will be able to obtain a search warrant for a blood draw, it is common. Given the consequences above, in most situations a person is better off submitting to a chemical breath test.  
DUI Defense in Lafayette, Crawfordsville, Indianapolis, Bloomington, Huntington and Fort Wayne
Gibson Law Office has extensive experience defending DUI cases statewide. If you have been arrested for operating while intoxicated, call us today for a free consultation.